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Dashcam, power take-off point

 
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Old 05-12-2019, 04:34 AM
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Default Dashcam, power take-off point

My S-Type has a cabin light module in the top centre of the windscreen. I'd like to connect a dashcam here, with a mini plug / socket, to avoid an unsightly and annoying lead to the cigarette lighter. Has anyone attempted this or have any suggestions?
 
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Old 05-12-2019, 05:41 PM
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If you want the dashcam to record incidences when parked you'll want power during ignition off times too.

I'm not familiar w/the power up there in an S-Type but a lot of cars turn off interior power after a short timeframe like 10 or 20 minutes. Only unlocking or door opening will turn the power back on.
In my DD (ford) I have a garmin w/dashcam and it has an internal battery that provides power for that function. (it's connected only to an *ignition on* power source)
 
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:20 AM
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Thanks for that info, I'll check out the Garmin. Internal battery would be the way to go, but I still think I'll need to connect to the car battery & I don't want a dangly & annoying cable!
 
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Old 05-13-2019, 08:41 PM
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I mounted an Escort radar detector to the rear view mirror. The cable was of all things, a flat telephone 4 wire cable terminating in a male RJ-11 jack. I merely ran it along the headliner, removed the A-pillar cover and tucked it behind. It was then easy to route beneath the glovebox, which leads into the console, right behind the cigarette lighter assembly. No wire dangling from the rear view mirror. A single twist tie keeps the wire firmly in place at the mirror. There was extra slack in the wire, but that easily tucked into the console near the speaker.

The control for the detector's remote mute is on a cigarette lighter plug. So, you do see the plug at the ashtray/lighter assembly. If only power was needed, I could have routed the cable behind the passenger kick panel, which houses the cabin fuse panel. You can use an "add a circuit" adapter and tap into the 20 amp cigarette lighter circuit (on 1999-2002 models, I believe it's fuse #32), and all you'd need is a good chassis ground.
 

Last edited by Warspite; 05-13-2019 at 08:47 PM. Reason: Spell check is your friend
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Old 05-13-2019, 11:14 PM
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Thank you Warspite - that's most helpful! I'll proceed with this plan, sounds very practical and straightforward.
 
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:48 PM
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If you'll ignore the messy garage wall, here's the resultant installation of somewhat modern devices on a 18 year old ST:
TomTom GPS on a clamshell mounted to the dashpad
Quick Charge wireless adapter mounted to the vent
Radar detector physically mounted to rear view mirror assembly, with wire hidden in headliner, and ran as I described.
 
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Old 05-15-2019, 09:54 PM
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Thanks Warspite, I'll try to match your neat installation. Except I won't have the radar detector - illegal here (Sydney, Australia) with a $2000 fine and loss of licence if caught with one!
 
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Old 05-15-2019, 10:31 PM
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The Radar detector had a dedicated, aftermarket mount for the mirror. I used it as an example, as your dashcam may have the same from the manufacturer, or aftermarket (I found mine on Amazon). It just shows how you can hide the power wire...and some of these new cameras are so small, you could probably hide the whole camera behind the mirror (and the wire) so that only you would know you had one installed.

The radar detector, like that GPS, came from an earlier vehicle, so I wanted to use what i already had. It's the mounts that are getting better and more creative.
 
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by fluty View Post
Thanks for that info, I'll check out the Garmin. Internal battery would be the way to go, but I still think I'll need to connect to the car battery & I don't want a dangly & annoying cable!
I routed my cable up the assist side A-Pillar and over the roof liner. Only way to see the wire hanging is from outside vehicle.;-)
 

Last edited by wydopnthrtl; 05-16-2019 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 05-16-2019, 05:22 PM
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Default Good advice and a good choice

I like it.

Of note, the car keeps tabs on bulbs using resistance. So if you do anything to alter the normal resistance (like installing LED lights, or something drawing power) the car will think something is wrong and do some really weird stuff.

Example: I installed LED tail lights and soon I had failure of the back-up sensors and a weird tone at weird times from the back dash. The fix: replace the LED tail lights with incandescent lights like the OEM. Instantly fixed the back-up sensors and stopped the weird warning tone.

I wonder if what weird thing would have happened if you had drawn power from the center dome light? Lol
 
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Old 05-17-2019, 09:41 AM
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Dash cam would have to operate minimally with 12v ignition. Dome light power would only be enabled when a door is opened. So, at least you'd have enough light in the cabin to get an interior image (if pointed backwards!) LOL.

My interior lights are all LEDs, with nothing quirky encountered. LED reverse lights are problematic, as other threads indicate. Only residual light, but no ther systems ruined.
I have installed LED Amber turn signals, with high enough resistance that I do not get a hyper flash, but occasionally, I get a display warning about turn signal circuit failure, which goes away with turn signal use.

The most logical choice is the cigarette lighter circuit, which is 12v ignition powered, and no dashcam I know will draw 20 amps, which is what that circuit is fused for.
 

Last edited by Warspite; 05-17-2019 at 09:48 AM.
 
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